Quilts and Other Stuff from Frances

The 20/20 rule

I find that when people start free-motion quilting, they are so focused on all of the mistakes that they can’t see how great it is looking. We need to remember that we are seeing at 12 inches and EVERYTHING can look bad at that range!!

So, maybe THIS is the idea that we should adopt…..

Do you agree with this philosophy?

9 thoughts on “The 20/20 rule

  1. Frances i just finished a lovely quilt top that I want to quilt. I made a smaller one so i could practice. I have such fear of messing it up that i havent started it yet. I hope this message may give me some inspiration. I certainly enjoyed looking at your mothers quilt yesterday that you hang at Easter. I loved hand appliqués and it reminds me of my Baltimore Album that i have hanging on my staircase.

    1. I feel the same way Jodie. I have a BIG quilt top that I finished 2+ years ago and I am scared to start on it. I keep practicing and hoping that I will get the courage to tackle it!!! Thanks for the thoughts about Mom’s quilt. I am fortunate to have a bunch of hers!! AND, I remember your gorgeous Baltimore Album!!!

  2. I so agree! People get too caught up in making it “right” but the fun comes sometimes from happy accidents. In quilting there are NO rules. Just have fun.

    1. I like the way you think Valerie. My goal recently has been to try to make the next quilt better than the previous one!! That way I can enjoy it but still work at improving!!

  3. You could add another “20” for time – 20 days. I have a friend who isn’t very confident in her quilting. I went to show her some of my own mistakes in a couple of my finished pieces – and I couldn’t find most the mistakes! And the ones I did find didn’t look nearly as bad! It was a very eye opening experience for both of us.

  4. I have heard this 20/20 saying before and I understand the reason for encouraging people to not be perfectionists and not let their novice quilting keep them from enjoying quilting. I had a quilt top my grandmother made in the 60s and once I started learning to do FMQ I still spent a full year practicing before quilting her top because I did not want to “ruin it”. Well, I wish I had waited another year more before quilting it because what a difference 12 more months made in my skills! If I had waited I would have been happy to look at the quilting and not feel sick to my stomach. Instead, it was a constant source of regret. Haste makes waste. I gave it to my daughter. Maybe I am a perfectionist but why do people spend all the time to piece a top and get nice points and joined seams only to drop the ball and do such terrible or mediocre quilting they may risk regretting? We can practice on unimportant things first. My grandmother’s quilt was priceless to me and I wanted to quilt it myself, just did it too soon. My two cents.

    1. Hi Beverly. I am so sorry that you are unhappy with your Grandmother’s quilt and I sure understand what you mean by not wanting to ruin something. I too have quilts that I wish I had made differently!! I currently have a large top that I made 2+ years ago and I am also worried about quilting it. I keep practicing and practicing but at some point, I am going to have to put on my “big-girl” panties and just make a start!!

    2. I agree with you. That is why I am afraid to try. What I am doing is making a sample first before I try to quilt mine. I hope this will reduce my fears and improve my free motion skills

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